inquests

An inquest is a non adversarial fact finding inquiry, into the death of an individual.

It is held in public at a Coroners Court and is administered by a Coroner sometimes with a jury. The purpose of an inquest is to establish where, when and how a person died.

Although an inquest will not lead to a finding that an individual or an organisation is directly to blame for someone’s death, it is usually an important part of the process of holding people or bodies to account and in some cases ensuring that steps are taken to prevent deaths in similar circumstances occurring again.

If you need someone to act on your behalf at an inquest, contact Burton Copeland today by calling 0161 827 9500, or by filling in our online form and waiting to hear back from us.

inquest procedure

An inquest it not held in respect of every death, but will be ordered by a Coroner if a death was violent or unnatural as well as if it happened while in police custody, in prison or detained under the Mental Health Act 1983. It is the coroner’s duty to determine the cause of death by examining all the evidence. Possible conclusions include:

  • Natural causes
  • Accidental
  • Suicide
  • Unlawful killing
  • Lawful killing
  • Industrial disease

If the coroner cannot come to a conclusive verdict, then this is called an open verdict.

how can burton copeland help?

There are two ways that our team of expert solicitors can assist at an inquest.

When an inquest is held, the Coroner must inform the married or civil partner of the deceased, a representative or the nearest relative. Other relatives can also attend and are entitled to examine witnesses. Coronial law can be daunting and confusing and the process can be incredibly difficult for families who just want to establish what happened to their loved one.

  • If a loved one has died, then Burton Copeland can assist you by taking control of the inquest on your behalf. Leaving no stone unturned we will investigate the circumstances and possible causes of death, analysing the evidence, liaising with experts where appropriate and challenging witnesses to ensure that the full facts of your loved one's death are heard and considered.

Our team of expert solicitors will work hard to help you find out what happened to your loved one and will be focussed on helping you and your family get the answers you need. We will liaise with the relevant authorities on your behalf, ask questions that need to be considered and request assistance from experts, if required. You will be kept up to date throughout proceedings, explaining complicated legal terms in a way that easy for you to understand.

  • Alternatively, you may be a driver involved in a traffic accident, an employer, a medical professional, or in some other way involved in the care of individual prior to their death. Burton Copeland can assist you in ensuring that you have the benefit of expert lawyers defending your position at an inquest. We can make an application for “Properly Interested Person” status ensuring that you have the same rights of others at inquest.

Here at Burton Copeland we have the experience of working in the longest and most complex inquests ever held. Our lawyers will ensure that all particulars are scrutinised and all possible medical causes, or the involvement of other individuals is taken into account.

contact us today

If you have been invited to attend an inquest, get in touch with our Manchester-based lawyers today to discuss how we might be of service. To speak to a member of the team, call us now on 0161 827 9500 during office hours, or dial 0161 832 7834 at any other time. Alternatively, fill in our contact form and we will get back to you as soon as possible.